Effectiveness of tailored promotional messages in the areas of organ donation
Public information campaigns have played an important role in increasing awareness of organ donation and the need for more organ donors. However, in a recent study, we found that awareness and knowledge regarding organ donation represented only one of several factors in people´s decisions to engage in organ donation-related behaviors (Schulz et al., 2006). In addition, we noted that the three language groups in Switzerland differ substantially with respect to the factors influential in their organ donation decisions. Few studies, however, have examined cultural differences in health-related prosocial behavior. Existing studies tend to examine wide cultural differences, e.g., China or Japan versus the United States or racial subcultures in the United States. We seek to examine the role of cultural micro-variation (cultural differences within a nationally and racially homogeneous population) building on our previous study of organ donation in Switzerland. More specifically, the proposed research seeks to test the implications of these cultural differences as they relate to the design of tailored promotional campaigns for prosocial behavior. The proposed study applies communication theory concepts to the design of effective tailored communication strategies to promote organ donation as an important example of health-related prosocial behavior.